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China Arrests Thousands In Internet Porn Crackdown

The Evil Couch Re:1000 Yuan (204 comments)

The direct exchange rate is not nearly as interesting as actual buying power that reward represents to the average person in China. I haven't studied economics, so someone can totally call me out on this, but it looks like purchasing power of the US is roughly eight times that of China, according to the Wikipedia. Based on this slightly-informed conclusion, it appears that the reward is roughly 1,172 USD, 1,233 CAD, 725 GBP, or 818 EUR. That number seems much more persuasive.

more than 4 years ago

North Magnetic Pole Moving East Due To Core Flux

The Evil Couch Re:How convenient (346 comments)

If you can't track a position that's accurate to within a relatively small tolerance, you cannot derive an accurate heading from it.

As a devil's advocate experiment, I'm going to determine the accuracy of the heading of a pair of GPS receivers (assuming a +/- 8m accuracy) mounted on the fore and aft of a supertanker (379m long).

Since the worst case scenario for determining the heading is that one is fully 90 degrees left of travel and the other is 90 degrees right of travel, we basically have a giant pair of right triangles that describe the error. The dimensions of the triangles end up being 8m, 189.5m, and 189.669m.

Unless I've totally fucked up my trigonometry from decades of disuse, I end up with a maximum error of 2.417 degrees, so the average error is probably about 1 degree. I suspect that for voyages of thousands of kilometers, that's a significant error.

more than 4 years ago

The US Economy Needs More "Cool" Nerds

The Evil Couch Re:Oh really? (453 comments)

What are the other six people doing now?

more than 4 years ago

Google Chrome Extensions Are Now Available

The Evil Couch Available? Well, kind of. (291 comments)

From the summary:

The Google Chrome Extensions site is now open for Windows and Linux users

From my browser:

Google Chrome is up to date. (

From Google Chrome Extension site:

Extensions are not yet supported in this version of Google Chrome. Please download the Beta Channel of Google Chrome to install extensions.

I realize that this was posted by kdawson, but having "beta test" in the title or, at the very least, somewhere in the summary would have been great.

more than 4 years ago

Flexible, Color OLED Screens For E-Readers

The Evil Couch Re:No! Larger please. (118 comments)

Why is it they have to step forwards to color already? What I want is much larger greyscale displays with better contrast for cheaper. Seriously, give me a U.S. Letter size display with better contrast for under $100 and I will jump on the e-reader bandwagon.

Because that's a false dichotomy? They're going to need to go color eventually and there's no reason that research into both cheaper, bigger monochrome displays and color displays can't be done simultaneously.

more than 4 years ago

Less Than Free

The Evil Couch Re:Horseshit. (330 comments)

For all I know, the word "yahoo" means something in Japanese that really is cool.

It doesn't actually have any meaning in Japanese, but it still sounds just as energetic in Japanese as it does in English. Especially since it comes with an exclamation mark.

more than 4 years ago

How To DDoS a Federal Wiretap

The Evil Couch Re:Already happens (112 comments)

Oh good. They've finally made reading Twilight a crime.

more than 4 years ago

Unknown 7m Asteroid Almost Impacted Earth

The Evil Couch Re:Hardly noticeable if it impacted (289 comments)

It would certainly create an audible boom for miles and miles, but it looks like they're talking about the air blast in terms of actual damage, not in terms of people being aware of it. I suspect that something like that would have to be damn close to being able to shatter windows at ~9,500 feet. (the actual location you input is offset by a km, so it's slightly more than just 9k feet away)

more than 4 years ago

New DoD Memo On Open Source Software

The Evil Couch Re:This is very odd... (146 comments)

Within the military community, you're absolutely correct, but politicians are rarely held to the same standard. If Joe Biden shot someone without provocation, Obama wouldn't face any problems but pressure to fire Biden and have him stand trial. If Private Joe Snuffy shoots someone for the hell of it, his Platoon Leader's getting fired.

more than 4 years ago

California Requests Stimulus Funding For Bullet Train

The Evil Couch Re:Why? (567 comments)

Make it compatible with Seattle's light rail and you've got a deal!

more than 4 years ago

Blizzard Offers Look Inside WoW at GDC

The Evil Couch Re:"Only" 68 people? (188 comments)

No, 68 for IT operations across multiple datacenters sounds about right. 2 shifts during the week, 2 during the weekend (at least), and a minimum of 2 operators per shift makes for 8 operators needed for a 24/7 environment. Looking around online, it looks like they have 4 US datacenters, 1 Latin America datacenter, 1 European datacenter, 1 Korean datacenter, 4 Chinese datacenters, and 1 Taiwanese datacenter. With a support staff of 68 and 12 DCs, they have an average of 5 and 2/3s operators per DC. They actually seem understaffed to me.

It's probably not the whole story, though. Someone else posted in this story that at least some of their DCs are not ran by Blizzard, but rather by local telcos and ISPs, so the number of 68 operators may not actually include all of their support staff. It's also possible that they're running on 1 operator per shift at some or all locations. It's not recommended, but if the DC is small enough and management doesn't care if Server Foo doesn't get looked at for 2 hours because their lone operator is working on Server Bar instead (or sleeping, because it's night shift and he doesn't have anyone to smack him if he falls asleep), then it'll work out just fine for them.

about 5 years ago

Supermarket bans Jedi Knight

The Evil Couch Re:Why? (169 comments)

Why in the world would anyone ban hoodies, and how would they stay in business if they actively enforced such a ban? Seriously, that's like banning jeans in your store.

Not quite the same. Most store security cameras are located at head height or higher, making the faces of people wearing hoodies nearly invisible. I don't know about the UK, but in the US, the courts are over-worked enough that the police are likely to drop any shoplifting case unless there is solid evidence that the person they have in custody actually tried to steal something. Anyone caught shoplifting in a store wearing a hoodie is unlikely to be prosecuted, unless they did it right in front of a security guard, so banning them is an understandable move.

about 5 years ago

China Admits Use of Death-Row Organs

The Evil Couch Re:A Waste? (309 comments)

Fair enough. As of 2008's CIA estimate, China has 1,330,044,544 people and Iran has 65,875,224, making the execution rates 1.29 per million in China and 5.25 per million in Iran.

For fun, I ran the numbers on the next three highest (and consistantly highest) capital states. Saudi Arabia, with 27,601,038 people and 102 executions, has 3.70 per million. The USA, with 304,059,724 people and 37 executions, has 0.12. Pakistan, with 172,800,048 people and 36 executions, has 0.21.

about 5 years ago

China Admits Use of Death-Row Organs

The Evil Couch Re:A Waste? (309 comments)

China is actually a lot more restrained than Iran.

Not in terms of executions.

In 2008, China is purported to have performed 1,718 out of the 2,390 reported executions in the entire world. 72% is a pretty significant chunk. Iran's #2 with 346 (14%). Then again, China has not been reported to still be executing minors; Iran still does. (Source: Amnesty International)

about 5 years ago

Flickr Yanks Image of Obama As Joker

The Evil Couch Re:Free speech and democracy? (869 comments)

Just because they would almost certainly win in court doesn't mean that Flickr wants to spend money to defend it in court. This is especially true, since even if the guy had a "pro" account, which he doesn't, he'd only be worth $25 a year to Flickr.

more than 5 years ago

Illinois Bans Social Network Use By Sex Offenders

The Evil Couch Re:Incoming 1st Amendment Challenge (587 comments)

So we can only call a crime violent if the victim is willing to resist in same[sic] manner?

Uh, yes. At least in the US; I don't have enough knowledge about other jurisdictions to comment on them.

If the victim makes absolutely no effort to resist, to include verbal refusal, then forcible rape cannot be proven. If I had any of my law books in my backpack, I'd cite them, but the bottom line here is that in order to charge someone with forcible rape, the victim has to offer some kind of resistance.

"He was big and scary, so I had sex with him, even though I didn't want to," is not a valid argument for forcible rape.
"I told him no, but he did it anyways," is.
"I tried to stop him, pushed him away, and told him no, but he did it anyways," is even better.

In the first case, the victim was coerced into having consensual sex. The offender could be charged with coercion, but charging forcible rape is going to be basically impossible. Again, for forcible rape to happen, the victim needs to resist in some manner. Absence of clear willingness is generally not enough to charge forcible rape, though may be enough to charge statutory rape, especially in cases of mental incompetence, incapacitation, being juvenile and unconsciousness.

Disclaimer: I am not a lawyer, but I have very recently aced two Criminal Law classes.

more than 5 years ago

Toyota Reveals A Humanoid Robot That Can Run

The Evil Couch Re:Fast walk? (not run?) (216 comments)

They're not really hyper ambulatory. 7kph is walking speed for most humans. ASIMO is filling the predatory niche of the North American zombie.

more than 5 years ago


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